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The Shadovar were the inhabitants of Thultanthar, the Shade enclave. During the course of the people's 1700 year exile from Toril, they battled the Malaugrym and other shadowy horrors of the realm, becoming more attuned to the Plane of Shadow with each generation and later Shadowfell for a short time, and were thus known as Shadovar.
Shadovar dressed in the style of clothing worn in old Netheril. Nearly all Shadovar were fervent worshippers of Shar, owing loyalty to their belief that she would have protected them.
The Shadovar were skilled wizards. They were known for their uncontested warlike temper. The wizards and sorcerers of Thultanthar scried the whole Faerûn also through the use of their powers. Shade spells fought to keep the sand storms at bay. They believed that the Anauroch was their undisputed domain. Doomsayers whispered that one day the Shadovar would have conquered the Cormyr, the Silver Marches or the Dales, using the sands and the mountains like natural defense to keep away enemy armies. They also prophesied that sooner or later the Great Sand Sea would have been infested by fearsome monsters controlled by power-hungry wizards spreading the tyranny of magecraft in the world once again. According to them, flying and venom-spitting human skulls, wraiths spellcasters and men who could become snakes would have infested the local area.
When Telamont Tanthul moved Thultanthar to the Plane of Shadow, their mythal was infused with the power of the Shadow Weave and given protection by Shar. After centuries in the Plane of Shadow and later Shadowfell, the ruling class of the City of Shade became twisted, dark, humanoid creatures referred to as shades. As such, it is incorrect to refer to all Netherese or Shades as Shadovar, as the organization truly only includes all the ruling class of Thultanthar. Despite this, most folk refer to all Netherese as Shadovar nonetheless.
In 1372 DR, when Thultanthar returned, people looked at the Shadovar as benevolent until their allegiance to Shar was discovered. As a result, the Shadovar discovered the Harpers and the nation of Cormyr opposing them.